Karahan Tepe, the second highlight of the Megalithomania tour, is the sister site to Gobekli Tepe, having similar T-shaped pillars and circular enclosures. Additionally, it features a room with mushroom or phallic shaped pillars. It’s not quite ready for prime time visitors as we had to drive on some unmarked roads to get here, but there is a visitor center with drinks and restrooms.
Sun, Sep 11: Karahan Tepe, Sanliurfa, Turkey
How old is Karahan Tepe?
And, is Karahan Tepe older than Gobekli Tepe?
Karahan Tepe is about 11,400 years old. The site is still being excavated and studied which may reveal a more precise age in the future. At the moment, Gobekli Tepe is older than Karahan Tepe, but there were periods where they were both in use at the same time.
Is Karahan Tepe better than Göbekli Tepe?
One of the benefits of Karahan Tepe compared to Gobekli Tepe is that it is less developed as a destination. That means you can get closer and at times touch some of the features and artifacts. For example, you can freely walk up to and inspect the unfinished t-shaped pillar as well as the unexcavated t-shaped pillars sticking out of the ground.
That said, they both have their pros and cons, and they are so close together, you’ll want to see them both.
The unfinished T-shaped Pillar at Karahan Tepe
Much like the Unfinished Obelisk at Aswan Quarry in Egypt, Karahan Tepe has it’s own unfinished T-shaped Pillar. This one however is not cracked, and there isn’t an obvious defect. Perhaps it was a case of pillar envy, and this one was abandoned after it fell short of expectations. It’s located in rear part of the site and is very crudely cut and shaped.
These are the people who have joined the Megalithomania Ancient Turkey Tour with me. Find your spot at the Megalithomania Tour and Events page.
The bearded head with a serpent’s body at Karahan Tepe
Carved into the wall of Structure AB, the stone phallus room is a human head, which appears to have a beard and a snake-like body that extends toward the right, parallel to the ground.
The person looks like they are wearing some sort of helmet, and the lips are full like an ancient Mr. Bill. The top of the head is flat and level with the 11 penis-pillars, suggesting that there may have been a roof / floor atop these supports.
One of the more interesting findings by Hugh Newman and J.J. Ainsworth about the Karahan Tepe head, is that it becomes illuminated during the winter solstice. The sun shines through the portal to Structure AD and lights up the face.
More photos of Karahan Tepe
If you came here because you were curious about the Karahan Tepe Penis Room, may we tempt you into seeing the phallus of the Cerne Giant in England?
Additional Karahan Tepe Videos
If you want to learn more about this ancient site of Karahan Tepe, the Megalithomania UK YouTube channel contains a wealth of videos.
Have you already been to Karahan Tepe, or want to visit there? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
Part of the Megalithomania UK Gobekli Tepe & Karahan Tepe Turkey Tour